Yesterday we were out early, well early by the kids standards, not quite the sunrise early most travelers are doing but hey! Mr Pom was waiting and we went straight to the main attraction the Temple of Angkor Wat.
The sight is a UNESCO World heritage site and the largest religious monument in the world, its absolutely huge, and considering its age (built 113-5BC) its in amazing condition! The stone walls are covered in intricate carvings of pictures and inscriptions and the central towers are so gigantic it was hard to capture a photograph of them once we were inside!
Walking around the temples definitely takes some endurance, the heat during the day is immense with the scorching sun beating down. Everyone is walking around absolutely dripping wet from perspiration and clinging to any shade the huge buildings offer! We decided to loose the crowds and found our own quiet corners and passageways where we could peacefully take our time, and slowly look at everything, we even managed a quick game of hide and seek among the stone columns (Small because the thought of actually not being able to find my children in such a massive complex makes me very uneasy!)
On the way out we bought the juiciest mangos and pineapples for a snack and the girls declared in Brucey style, Angkor Wat was their favourite!
Next up we visited what soon became my favourite, the Bayon Temple, a short drive away at Angkor Thom. Now this temple is the sort of temple out of story books! Over 200 large stone faces watch you as you walk around, some with a calm peaceful demeanour and others really looked like they were smiling at us! Amazing!
Again here there were lots of hidden stone passageways, steep steps up and down…..and of course lots of dusty cobwebs! Just what you need for that temple of doom feeling! By this point it was pretty scorchio so we enjoyed sitting in some of the smaller structures in the cool shade looking out and soaking it all up!
After finding our way out (always a challenge, there’s not too many signposts here!) the girls were hot and absolutely templed out, and as much as I would have loved to stay all afternoon playing Indiana we have to respect when it’s time to take them home. So home we went back to the pool to cool off!
In the evening we tuk tuked it into town again for dinner and a wander around the night market to pick up more Cambodian trousers for the girls. Everywhere I walk there’s someone shouting “Lady, lady what you want?, I got it!” It’s pretty intense, you can’t just browse…you need to buy, and everything’s $2! It’s exhausting!
Today has been a sort of rest/schooling day, we got up late and after breakfast we did some maths, English and ‘pop up’ Angkor Wats for their journals! Turned out pretty well actually, pats on the back all round!
In the afternoon we took a “school” trip out to the Silk Farm in the Pouk district not too far away. We were greeted at the site by an English guide who took us step by step through the silk production process. Starting right from the beginning he explained about the different mulberry bushes growing in the fields, to the little worms spinning their silk cocoons, all the way through to spinning the yarn, the dying processes and the delicate weaving on the looms. It was fascinating and so great to be able to touch and feel it all (including the little worms!!) as we went through all the different workshops.
Tomorrow is our last day of temples, so better clear some space on the memory card for another hundred photos!!!